Independent calls for an overhaul of the family courts
Having spent several months investigating family’s SA and
children’s protection issues, and having spent several years in the Family
courts self represented, one issue that stands out is the horrific fact that
“The Biggest or best liar wins”.
Our family court system and recent parliamentary reports of
its performance clearly indicate the need to address this issue as a primary
goal, accusations of child abuse are used by many as a tool to secure primary
parenting rights rather then to paint an honest picture of the family dynamics.
Making matters worse is the lack of accountability in
general, with orders of the court ignored seemingly with out consequence.
Having personally witnessed genuine complaints of abuse fall
on death ears, and in many cases tied up for years in the family court
labyrinth, compounded by many recent media articles exposing stories of
children being ordered into unsafe situations, our priorities must be to see
some bloody accountability.
Lie detectors, which are widely used overseas, should become
part of the debate, timely action on accusations of child abuse should be
paramount, and false testimony met with harsh penalties.
I have always felt that the only early intervention is by
that of our lawyers, rather than any attempt for all the parties involved to
seek the most equitable and honest out come, for the sake of their children’s
best interests and that of any chance of maintaining their sanity.
Early intervention by way of professional guidance, and
attempts to ascertain the perspective of the children before all the emotions
of separation and the distress caused by the whole family court process drag
parents away from the truth would go a long way in favour of an honest and
equitable outcome for all the parties involved.
Lawyers should be kept out of the picture for as long as
possible, to ensure the “The Best Lawyer” does not override the best outcome
for the families involved.
Its best I not touch on the Families SA report in any
further detail than to say the whole process is a bloody mess, and action
should be the number one priority for whichever government is elected to power
after this weekend.
If we as a society cannot protect our children, and the
sanctity of the family unit, it reflects very poorly on us as a community, and
on our future in general.
Mark M Aldridge
Independent Candidate for the Legislative Council
“Change is Necessary”
P O Box 1073 Virginia SA 5120
08 82847482 / 0403379500